Donglin Academy

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The Donglin Academy (Chinese: 東林書院; pinyin: Dōnglín Shūyuàn; literally: "Eastern Grove Academy", Wade–Giles Tung-lin), also known as the Guishan Academy (龜山書院 Guīshān Shūyuàn), was originally built in AD 1111 during the Northern Song (北宋) dynasty at present-day Wuxi in China. It was originally a school where the neo-Confucian scholar Yang Shi taught, but later fell into disuse. The name "Donglin" was from famous Donglin Temple at the base of Mount Lu (Lushan) where Yang Shi traveled before and felt that the temple was a good place to teach students. When Yang Shi finished his scholarship, he went to Wuxi seeing the location of Donglin Academy similar to the Donglin temple, then began to teach students in Wuxi for 18 years under name "Donglin Academy".

Wuxi Donglin academy old stone memorial arch

In 1604, during the Wanli era, Gu Xiancheng (顧憲成 Gù Xiànchéng, (1550–1612), a Ming Grand Secretary, along with Gao Panlong (高攀龍 Gāo Pānlóng, 1562–1626), a scholar, with fellow scholars Qian Yiben(钱一本) and Yu Kongjian(余孔兼) restored the Donglin Academy on the same site with the financial backing of local gentry and officials from Changzhou state governor Ouyang Dongfeng(欧阳东风) and Wuxi county governor Linzai(林宰). The academy gave its name to the resulting Donglin movement.

In 1626 the academy was brutally destroyed leaving only part of the stone memorial arch. The nowadays academy was a rebuilt during Qing dynasty period by Manchu emperors Yongzheng and Qianlong to win hearts of Han scholars in Wuxi area.[1]

In 1981 - 1982, Chinese government re-decorated the Academy. The Donglin Academy park can be found at 867, Jiefang Donglu, Wuxi City now.


  1. ^ 老虎 (2011-02-19). 东林书院为清流 (in Chinese). Retrieved 2012-03-15.